None of us have to look back very hard to spot the headlines focused on election fraud cases or claims. In the last year alone, The Heritage Foundation logged 1,438 cases of voter fraud in its Election Database. Fortunately, election seals help protect the democratic process by securing access to classified and confidential information with their tamper-evident features. With local and regional elections upon us, and national elections on the horizon, it’s more urgent than ever for every district and municipality to reassess and implement election a quality security seals program.
Tamper-evident seals, such as the Medium Duty Pull Tight Security Seal (MPT), sharply reduce the chances of voting fraud by helping to ensure the integrity of ballot boxes, voting machines, and the ballots they contain. In this era of challenges to vote tabulations, polling districts which utilize properly functioning security seals can play an essential role in preserving the trust and legitimacy of the democratic process.
Secure Ballot Boxes
Security seals are used by election agencies and boards to deter unauthorized users from accessing ballot boxes and other containers. CSS offers a variety of fully customizable seals, including the popular American-made line of tamper-evident pull-tight seals. Once a plastic seal is properly affixed to a ballot box or voting machine, any attempt to improperly access or tamper with it will leave visible evidence of a broken seal.
For the majority of ballot box and voting machine applications, CSS recommends either the Medium Duty Pull-Tight Security Seal (MPT) or the Heavy Duty Pull-Tight Seal (HPT). These security seals are easily customized with unique serial numbers, logos, or QR or barcodes for both security and tracking purposes. Both seals feature best-in-class performance and security features, and the HPT seal is constructed with a unique, thinner diameter that's 40% stronger in tensile strength than similar industry alternatives, enabling the seal to fit through smaller apertures while maintaining complete functionality.
Protect Voting Machines
In addition to securing paper ballot boxes, security seals are also used to protect electronic voting machines and other critical components. Security seals effectively deter unauthorized access to the internal components of voting machines, ensuring that the devices remain tamper-free and operate as intended throughout the election.
The Cable 1.5mm seal is an ISO 17712-certified, aluminum-bodied adjustable cable seal that provides an alternative to the tamper-evident plastic seals. Its non-preformed galvanized cable unravels when cut to prevent resealing, ensuring the integrity of the process and the ballots. The standard 12-inch length seal is stocked in red or blue, and CSS offers a readily-available wide range of customizable options to enhance both security and trackability.
Chain of Custody
Maintaining a clear and unbroken chain of custody of ballots is essential in any election process. The proper utilization of security seals helps ensure that election materials remain secure from the moment they are prepared until the final votes are tallied.
In addition to ballot boxes and voting machines, tamper-evident security seals can be used to secure bags containing ballots during transportation from polling stations to central counting locations, and then even as they are logged and distributed within the counting locations. The seals are critical to helping election officials and third party observers verify that the materials have not been tampered with in transit.
Metal security seals are often used to secure storage rooms or cabinets containing sensitive election equipment and materials. By preventing unauthorized access across the entire voting process, seals serve to safeguard the integrity of the very elections that define our democracy.
Transparency and Trust
Perhaps the most critical role that security seals play in elections is in upholding the trust and transparency of the democratic process. When voters believe that their votes are counted accurately and that the election is conducted fairly, the foundations of democracy are strengthened.
Whichever security seals are used, whether made of plastic or metal, the simple fact is that they are indispensable tools in safeguarding the integrity of elections and protecting the democratic process. Seals help secure ballot boxes, voting machines, and the all-so-important chain of custody, ensuring that elections are free from tampering and manipulation. By fostering transparency and trust, security seals play a vital role in upholding the fundamental principles of democracy and ensuring that the voices of all citizens are heard through the accurate counting of their votes.
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